Hannah, your own text is at odds with your own headline of hype:

SCIDPDA’s director of community initiatives, Jamie Lee, more or less said the same thing. She noted that the development authority, which is a landlord for both commercial and residential tenants, was drawing up repayment plans for its commercial tenants, some of whom owe up to $30,000 in back rent, partially because it wants these businesses to be successful, but partially because it is more difficult and costly to fill their spaces.


I’m curious what the numbers are too. Many businesses simply folded because they couldn’t maintain other, non-rent costs in the face of the pandemic revenue losses: labor, utilities, etc. Not the same puzzle as residents who use their leases to live and not do business.


"But unlike low-income residential tenants, commercial tenants do not have a right to counsel, according to Edmund Witter, managing attorney at the Housing Justice Project. However, because they are registered as corporations, commercial tenants must hire a lawyer. That probably makes sense for soulless corporations, but for your favorite family-owned Thai place? Jeez."

I'll never understand why Stranger staffers insist on writing about topics they don't understand.

Commercial tenants, like anyone involved in civil litigation, have a "right" to counsel. What Hannah is trying to say is that they are not entitled to have counsel provided at no cost. In addition, regardless of whether a corproation has a soul, it cannot appear pro se:

Because a corporation is an artificial entity, necessarily its interests in a court proceeding must be represented by a person acting on its behalf. Representing another person or entity in court is the practice of law. To practice law, one must be an attorney. RCW 2.48.170. Thus Washington, like all federal courts, follows the common law rule that corporations appearing in court proceedings must be represented by an attorney. Lloyd, 91 Wash.App. at 701, 958 P.2d 1035. Id. at 535-6.

Dutch Vill. Mall v. Pelletti, 162 Wash. App. 531, 535-36, 256 P.3d 1251, 1252 (2011)


Rent protections will last 6 months, so we won’t see how that looks until August. Renter rights outweigh landlord rights for the city of Seattle. Sawants cronies lied about how it will displace renters in the winter, and went on to say everyone opposing her measure is racist. There was lots of emotion involved but not a lot of accurate facts.


"Nobody Knows the Number of Seattle Small Businesses at Risk of Eviction Starting Next Week" but everybody knows that nothing The Stranger says about it will make any difference whatsoever.


@2 - it's way more fun to blame the landlords than to actually look into the issue.


I thought all business owners were bad? Didn't Matt just remind us this morning how they all are stealing wages from employees and we should be focused on that instead of trivial things like shoplifting?


Agreed for Hannah or any Stranger writer to pretend to care about any business of any size is amazingly hypocritical.


The City of Seattle doesn't really care about small business.... and its very clear they take a negative view of larger businesses altogether.... Amazon, Boeing, Paul Allen, Microsoft etc.

They didn't protect downtown during the riots....and have done nothing since to help.

They voted to defund the police and let drug dealing, vagrancy, crime riddle the city core and neighborhoods.

What is Hannah's motive here in pretending to care about small businesses? Is The Stranger tying to get more advertising dollars from local businesses... a little late now isn't it?


It's much more likely that established businesses can't afford the new rents and leases that will appear after areas like the U Dist complete building all the (checks notes) 100 24-story and 160 16-story buildings.

Nothing will change that.


@#12: Lee's Asian is a going concern, and the owners are relatively young. We had very tasty take out from there last weekend. I am sure they will find a landing place. But also, five or six floors of new apartments on a street well served by transit are desperately needed.


@13 New apartments on a street we’ll served by transit?

I did not now the city desperately needed more high end rentals.

What people keep saying is that the city needs more low income housing.

We’ll low income housing is never “new” and since location drives price it’s also never found on a “high walk score” street in a desirable coastal city.

If you think any of the new places are going to be low-income you’re tripping.

All the low income stock has been torn down and replaced by luxury townhomes. It’s going to take around 30 years for the new housing that’s being built to become dilapidated enough to be priced as low-income.


Sir Tob Two Sticks: Sometimes it is amusing to have actual information instead of just opinions. Go to "SEATTLEINPROGRESS.COM". Navigate to this project site and you will see that above the street level there will be 58 SEDUs, studios apartments and a handful of small one bedrooms, plus 12 hotels room size lodgings units. There is minimal on-site parking and minimal tenant amenities. SLU /Belltown high-rise high end rentals this ain't. Developers will not build low income housing without big subsidies or zoning incentives or public ownership. The problem is government action or inaction, not the development market. In Seattle we have spent the last fifty year zoning out and abating very low income housing. Sure, the old Chinatown and Belltown SRO hotels and dormitory hotels were wretched, but way less wretched that the very poor face now. The widow turning her big old house into a boarding house? Zoned out. Flop houses? Gone. Mr. Meudede wrote an article in this paper a few years ago about the need for slums. It was spot on. Aside from the SF zones issue, the City's zoning in the multifamily zones is absurdly restrictive. The only solution is to build build build to wildly increase density and drive down prices for the mid market (the wealthy can fend for themselves just fine), subsidize housing for the working poor, and figure out some very low cost housing solutions for the destitute. These are all options that rest within the powers of the City government. You are shooting at the wrong target.


"Mudede". Sorry


It could be that businesses can't exist in a city which allows vagrants, homeless drug addicts and crime to run rampant.

It could be the imposition of high cost of doing business in Seattle.

These appear to be greater threats to small business than rent costs.

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